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XV Competition diary: 20 June

Cello, Organizing Committee, Piano, Violin
XV Competition diary: 20 June 

On June 20th Round I piano auditions in the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory came to an end.

An hour and a half after the last competitor’s performance the names of those advancing to Round II were announced.

The jury selected 12 of the 36 musicians to advance to Round II as specified by the rules of the Competition.  The results were announced from the stage of the Great Hall by Vladimir Ovchinnikov, who wryly remarked that this honour came to him because he was the only juror wearing a tie.  He requested those present to bear with him even though the results might not please everyone (and there was no negative reaction to be seen in the hall).  He also thanked all the participants and wished them success.

The competitors advancing to Round II are:  Sergey Redkin, Maria Mazo, Reed Tetzloff, Ilya Rashkovsky, George Li, Lucas Debargue, Lukas Geniušas, Daniel Kharitonov, Julia Kociuban, Mikhail Turpanov, Nikolay Medvedev, and Dmitri Masleev.  This means that seven Russians will continue (Lukas Genušias is from both Russia and Lithuania), two pianists from the USA, and one each from France, Poland, and Germany.

Seven musicians performed in the final Round I auditions:  Russians Alexey Petrov and Dmitry Shishkin, Shino Hidaka from Japan and Andrejs Osokins of Latvia in the afternoon; and in the evening Miao Huang (Germany), Nikolay Medvedev (Russia), and Dmitry Masleev (Russia).  Except for Dmitry Shishkin who played the Kawai instrument, all the competitors chose the Steinway piano.

The repertoire in these performances was quite broad but did not depart much from the tendencies established on previous days.  There were sonatas by Mozart and Haydn, but the preference of the competitors went to Beethoven’s late sonatas (No. 32 was played for the fifth time in the Competition, while on this day No. 30 was played once, and No. 26 twice).   Liszt’s “Wild Hunt” attracted three musicians, and there was room for the classic etudes in A minor and G-sharp minor by Chopin as well as for Tchaikovsky’s “Dumka” that two competitors offered.  A fresh tone was set by Nikolay Medvedev’s rendering of the Andante from Tchaikovsky’s “Grand Sonata” and Dmitry Masleev’s interpretation of another Tchaikovsky piece, the “Chant élégiaque”.   By the way, those two performers at the end of the day both got a ticket to Round II.

Auditions for Round II will take place on June 21st and 22nd beginning at 1:00 pm and 7:00 pm each day.

On June 20th the results of Round I violin auditions were announced in the Small Hall of the Moscow Conservatory.

Those advancing to Round II are:  Pavel Milyukov (Russia), Alexandra Conunova (Moldova), Mayu Kishima (Japan), Younguk Kim (South Korea), Stepan Starikov (Russia), Bomsori Kim (South Korea), Clara-Jumi Kang (Germany) , Yu-Chien Tseng (Taiwan), Yoo Jin Jang (South Korea), Haik Kazazyan (Russia), Sergei Pospelov (Russia), and Christoper Tun Andersen (Norway).  Boris Kuschnir revealed the decision of the jury at 11:30 pm Moscow time.

By chance, the last two to make the semi-finals, Sergei Pospelov and Christopher Tun Andersen, were also the two on the last day of Round I auditions, as they were the 24th and 25th to be heard.   The repertoire was quite different from what was heard on previous days when several competitors had almost identical programmes.  Every performance on this day had at least one piece that had not been heard before and was not duplicated on any other programme.  Kristine Balanas of Latvia opened the afternoon session and ended her presentation with Schumann’s Violin Sonata.  Russia’s Daniil Avstrikh played Tchaikovsky’s “Meditation” to start and nearer the end offered Ravel’s “Pièce en forme de Habanera”.  Igor Khukhua from Russia played Saint-Saëns’ “Étude in the Form of a Waltz” in addition to the mandatory pieces.

It was Stefan Tarara of Germany who opened the evening’s auditions by surmounting the challenges in Paganini’s Variations on the theme “Nel corpiù non mi sento” from Giovanni Paisiello’s opera “La molinara”.  Sergei Poseplov placed Tartini’s “Devil’s Trill” sonata in Fritz Kreisler’s version between his mandatory pieces by Paganini and Tchaikovsky.  And the last musician to be heard in Round I, Christopher Tun Andersen, followed Paganini’s Caprice No. 24 and Tchaikovsky’s  “Valse-scherzo” with Christian Sinding’s “Suite in the Old Style”.

The violinists’ performances drew quite a response from the audience.  There were no orchestra seats left in the Small Hall, and the musicians came back on stage time after time to acknowledge applause that seemed never to stop.

Auditions for Round II will take place on June 21 and 22 beginning at 1:00 pm and 7:00 pm each day.

On June 20 the results of the Round I cello auditions were announced in the Small Hall of the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic.

In the afternoon session there were Jonathan Roozeman from the Netherlands, who was also youngest of the competitors at just 17; Sihao He from China, who played the cello version of Franck’s well-known Violin Sonata; and Alexei Zhilin from Saint Petersburg, who brought the afternoon session to a close with a fine performance of Shostakovich’s  sonata accompanied by Andrei Telkov.

The last three contestants were no exception to the rest of the competition.  In the evening there was again Shostakovich’s sonata interpreted by Moscow’s Alexander Ramm, while programmes by musicians from Hungary (Ildikó Szabó) and South Korea (Hee Young Kim) completed the proceedings.

At the end of the day the jury announced which competitors would advance to Round II of the Competition:  Anastasia Kobekina (Russia),  Pablo Ferrández-Castro (Spain), Leonard Elschenbroich (Germany), Tristan Cornut (France), Andrei Ionuț  Ioniță (Romania), Bruno Philippe (France), Alexander Buzlov (Russia), Valentino Worlitzsch (Germany), Seung Min Kang (South Korea), Fedor Amosov (Russia), Jonathan Roozeman (the Netherlands), and Alexander Ramm (Russia). 

The auditions for Round II will take place on June 21st and 22nd beginning at 1:00 pm and 7:00 pm each day.